Archive for the ‘Chronicles’ Category

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They say the world is becoming a smaller place each day. This rings true in the ears of our Anti Marki Intelligence agents who are currently fighting a war on human trafficking. A lesser known agency until recently, they are a small group of officials who are specialised in combating the Makri group – a global concern with widespread members through many different countries. With origins in New Zealand, the Makri spread from the Southern Hemisphere to Asia, from Asia they moved east across Europe. Finally they found settlement in Mexico and certain other parts of South America. The Makri are funded by trafficking of guns, drugs and young girls.

The Anti Marki Intelligence Agency was set up to wage war against the Makri. With support from the United States, England, Caledonia, Japan, Germany and France the success of the AMIA has been remarkable.

Chairman, Jurgen Kiertrich, stated, “We have seen a significant reduction in the amount of trafficking in the past few months. Several Makri cells have been closed down thanks to the effort of our agents.”

With success being declared in Europe, South America has a different view. A former Makri member, Antonio (name changed to protect identity), told us, “They may think they have closed the Makri cells down but for every one they stop another three will replace it.”

Antonio fled from the Makri after having spent ten years in Mexico as part of a drug cartel ring. Questions arose over the financial mismanagement of his group. Falling into debt Antonio’s family were threatened, forcing him to cross the border to the United States and seek refuge. He is currently under the protection of the AMIA.

Antonio’s story is a small piece of the fear that the Makri have caused. We met a girl by the name of Analice, a former call girl for the Makri. She was taken from her home in Ukraine. Her then partner, Kris Markoso, had promised her a new life in the United States where she would receive an education and fulfil her ambition of becoming a school teacher. Analice left her home, selling everything she owned for the venture and departed Ukraine in the middle of the night aboard a ship bound east.

I was told that I was going aboard Liberty,” Analice told us. “I had heard so much about the ship. I was excited.”

However, Analice was not taken aboard Liberty (A ship that was custom built for the purposes of safe travel for refugees by King Fasio Sanchez of Spain). Instead she and twenty other girls were taken aboard a small fishing vessel. Her journey ended in Mexico. She never saw Kris again. Instead of an education Analice was forced into prostitution to pay for her keep in the slums of Mexico City. She and the other girls being told that the harder they worked and the more money they earned the more luxury they would receive. Analice assured us that this was true for most of the girls. Some were taken to exclusive villas and showered with gifts. Others were left alone to fight a growing drug addiction.

The AMIA have heard thousands of stories similar to that of Analice. Each day they re-home and protect thousands of girls – some as young as eight – from Makri forced labour.

Our job is just beginning to show fruit,” said Agent Kiertrich. “We have a much larger fight ahead of us.”

Vowing to end the Makri group within the next five years some argue that the intentions of the AMIA are ambitious. The Marki are like a virus having spread to the four corners of the world. There is no knowing how far their membership base has reached. The Makri claim to hold powerful figures as their members. AMIA are not deterred by this. With determination and a dedicated team they will end the tyranny.

A Torrance Global Exclusive

Written by Jaimya Van Hols

Adapted from Conflict: Global Crisis

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She’s a big girl! The heavily armoured tank used by the elite team known as Rogue Battalion. Tank Commander Ewan Freeman aka Bones hates to enter hostile territory without her!


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Taken from the highly anticipated graphic novel series written by Vivika Widow and created by Leo ST Paul.

The boy was screaming again. His parents had insisted on a photograph of him on his own to commemorate young Adrien’s Bar Mitzvah. He was a man now in the eyes of his faith but being high on the autism spectrum meant that the fuss and the pomp and ceremony of the day had left him feeling over stimulated. The attack of sensations on his senses caused him to act out wildly.

Julianna Beltane, proud citizen of New York City and freelance photographer of three years was used to dealing with difficult clients. Most people she met were nervous in some way. They were nervous at having their picture taken, they were in the midst of an event they had been planning for the best part of the year or they were just anxious to be done with the photo. Julianna’s full cheeks and round face she got from her mother and the caring, almond eyes she got from her father were soothing. Most people responded warmly to her. She had a natural ability for drawing people from their nerves.

Adrien dropped into a chair. He gave a heavy sigh. The red tie with black leaf print had been pulled off. His crisp white shirt was torn open at the collar.

Your mom would like to get a photo of you,” Julianna said softly as she took the chair beside him. “How are you feeling?”

Adrien didn’t answer. A frown tightened the skin between his thick, black eyebrows.

You should enjoy your day. It only comes once,” Julianna added.

Adrien liked her. She had the scent of honey around her. Her pale skin was scattered with freckles, mostly concentrated across the bridge of her nose.

What if we do it whist everyone else is busy?” Julianna suggested, knowing that the boy would feel better with the other’s being distracted.

The storm in Adrien’s face dissipated. He formed a smile but kept his gaze below Julianna’s eye line. She angled her camera. Click. Her instict told her that the unposed and spontaneous photographs would look much better than anything that could be staged. There would be some eye catching images for Mrs Adams of her son as he danced on the cusp of manhood.

The photographer was no stranger to Autism. Her younger brother was also afflicted. When he had a meltdown only his Jules could calm him.

Adrien settled into his party after that leaving Julianna to capture special moments. It was the reason she started her photography business. Cementing memories in an image to enjoy in future years was a special kind of magic.

Thanks for your help,” Mrs Adams said to her at the end of the day.

Julianna didn’t doubt the appreciation of the mother. Mrs Adams had especially noticed Julianna’s patience in dealing with Adrien, even when the boy was determined to be difficult. However, she was far too distracted by the hoard of thirteen year old kids in her care to show it.

It was a beautiful day to be a part of,” replied the photographer. She wasn’t lying. It was a highly emotional day that marked the beginning of a shift in the parent/child relationship.

Julianna beamed a wide smile. “I’ll give you a call in a couple of days. I’ll bring some prints by and you can choose the ones you like best.”

Yes, yes,” said Mrs Adams.

Adrien waved to Julianna from amongst a collection of his friends before the door was closed on the photographer and the party could continue on with invited guests only.


A small, one bed apartment in Queen’s close to where her last job had been was where Julianna called home. She decided to walk that day. The weather was mild and she felt she needed the exercise. She had been stuck indoors a lot lately. Work was her excuse. The truth was she met new people so often she never made a real connection any more.

She pushed open the door, dropped her bag and habit drew her finger over to press the button on the answering machine.

‘No Messages’ said the emotionless voice.

The house was eerily quiet. Even the upstairs neighbours weren’t making any noise. Normally they were in the midst of a drunken brawl by three, breaking up by five, packed up by six and back together by eight. It was a pattern they had gotten themselves into that showed no signs of changing.

Although Julianna told herself she was fine with the solitude she most definitely didn’t like the silence. She switched on the television to create the illusion of having someone else in the house.

A muscular man and woman danced onto the screen. He wore a t-shirt so tight it could have fit a child. She wore pink Lycra. Her shiny, golden hair was tied in a ponytail that danced around her shoulders. They enthusiastically invited those at home to join them at a local gym chain.

Julianna caught a glimpse of herself in the mirror that hung above her fireplace. She looked so dull and pale. Not like the warm, healthy glow of the gym girl.

We interrupt this commercial for an important news broadcast from Torrance Global.”

Julianna’s attention was seized by a news reporter wearing a black mourning tie.

This morning, Prince Mohammar Ahmbad of Saudi Arabia was found dead in his home in Abu Dahbi. Although there has been no official statement from the palace it is assumed that this is the latest in the chaos killings. Authorities are warning to be vigilant. If you see anything suspicious, report it immediately.”

Julianna sighed. An image of the Saudi prince was shown. He was hanging by his feet. His head had been removed. Attendants were throwing themselves in front of the decapitated remains to prevent the press photographers for catching them.

Julianna worried that it was far too early to be showing such gore. Little children who couldn’t understand what was happening would be frightened. Adrien and his friends could be watching.

It hit her hard that such brutality could happen to Prince Mohammar. She had watched broadcasts of him speaking out for women’s rights. When the chaos killings began he worked tirelessly, urging those of every nation to come together in solidarity when it would be easy to run in fear.

For months now the ‘Chaos Killer’ had been targeting world leaders across the globe, killing indiscriminately. Wherever he lurked, chaos followed, giving him his apt media tag.

Even with the combined might of the world’s security agencies they were no closer to finding the culprit, establishing opportunity or even motive. Prince Mohammar would not be the last.

The horrific pictures of the prince were replaced by those of Belgian Minister, Jacques Marlode. The screen was filled with the Minister with his two daughters. Holding his two young daughters, he was grinning wide with genuine pride that suited him better than his usual political astuteness. He had been the first victim of the ‘Chaos Killer’. His decapitated remains were found in a bathroom of the Hague.

A bleep sounded from Julianna’s phone. Feeling morose at the state of global affairs she drew herself away.


Julianna smiled. She had been having an online relationship with Todd for months. Although they hadn’t met in person he had become a large part of her life. Not a night had went by since their first chat when they didn’t swap messages. She knew what he looked like from the photos of his skiing trip he had sent her. He was handsome, coal haired and had an endearing smile.

She hoped to meet him in person. Perhaps someday soon. It was all she could think of to distract her from the dismal state of the world.

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Part 2 GETTING TO KNOW HIM will be available exclusively on 6pm (UK time) 15th April 2017.

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The play drew on towards it exciting conclusion. Alessa had been so engrossed in the ensemble below she left her seat and leaned over the balcony to get a closer look at the players. Her father had called something to her but the volume of the noise had drowned out his words.

On stage the players bellowed their scene. Their cries rang out over the pleading strings of the violins. Her heart was thumping with excitement. She clutched her hands tightly. Her palms were moist. The lights darkened further. The music broke to give way to tender notes of the piano. Alessa could have wept at the solemn song.

She felt a body slumping heavily against her. The blue ribbon that held her ringlets together was torn from her auburn locks. She looked back. She was face to face with her father. He was staring at her wide eyed, mouth open, dead. She didn’t scream. Her voice caught in her dry throat. Another body fell against her. This time it was her mother. All blood had drained from her face leaving a blue tint. She too was dead. In the doorway to the balcony was the silhouette of a man in a long coat. Alessa, stupefied, stared back at him like a young deer who had felt the deadly bullet of the hunter’s rifle. He raised his finger to his mouth and hushed her.

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The Southern Hemisphere war had left thousands of people homeless, without food and medicine. Sally Mainlock was no exception. When the elite Rogue Battalion force rescued the central town of Gainsby back from the rebel Makri group she had been split from the rest of her family. As Rogue Battalion kept the town secure, the refugees caught among the fighting tried their best to pick up their former lives. Sally held hope that she and her family would be reunited but they remained trapped elsewhere. She stopped herself thinking about. It made her too restless. She bedded down with the other refugees in the camp that had been created within the town hall. Rogue Battalion ushered in what supplies they could. Things like tea and biscuits had become scarce during the fighting but were now flowing as freely as they ever had.

Sally laid her cup beside her sleeping bag and munched her biscuit greedily. She had always been a slim girl but now she felt like a bag of bones. Her golden hair had lost all of its shine and it was thinning. Her hooked nose looked disproportional on her gaunt, drawn face.

Go away!” cried out on the other girls to a young man who had sat himself beside her.

Sally had seen the same young man try to engage other girls in conversation. They all had had the same response.

‘They’re being harsh on him,’ Sally surmised. ‘He’s probably just lonely like the rest of us.’

He stood again when the girl gave him nothing but derision. He raised his hands and walked away. He caught Sally’s gaze. He had a muscular physique that hadn’t faded with undernourishment. His skin was a warm brown. His handsome face was sun beaten. He sat down next to her.

Do you mind?” he asked, even though it was too late.

Don’t worry about the others,” said she. “We’re all sick with worry,” Sally explained.

He pulled his knees up to his chest and began to scan the room. A man in a Rogue Battalion uniform stationed at the main door looked over in their direction. Seeing no distress, he went back to his watch.

Where you a model before?” he asked.

Sally blushed. “Nothing like that.”

He raised his shoulders and examined her more closely. “You could be a model.”

Sally giggled. “I don’t think so.”

He sighed.”This is no place for us,” he stated.

We’re safe here,” Sally commented, referring to the presence of Rogue Battalion.

It’s a shame. I have a modelling agency in the States but I can’t get there unless I’m bringing models with me. No more camps, no more rations…”

Why can’t you go on your own?”

Diplomatic rules have come into play because of the war. New border checks mean I have to have models with me to prove the legitimacy of the agency.”

Sally felt sorry for him, having such a glamorous life waiting for him but being trapped in a war zone because of a technicality. “Hopefully you will find someone soon,” she said.

He examined her again. “You could have such a great career as a model. I know plenty of brands that would snap you up.” He seemed so sure.

Sally’s heart began to beat a little faster. “You really think so?” He nodded in agreement. “I would love to go to the States but my family are still missing,” she explained.

I was reading just the other day about families being reunited in the States. They have taken as many refugees as they could. That’s probably where your family are. Didn’t you see the news?” He spoke in such a matter of fact tone it suggested that he wasn’t telling her anything she didn’t already know.

Sally squealed. “My family are in the States?”

He was taken aback by her sudden enthusiasm. “I can’t say for certain but if they’re not here that’s where they will be.”

If I am one of your models will you take me there? Will you take me to my family?” she grabbed his shoulder excitedly.

I don’t know,” he hesitated.

I promise I will do my best for you! Anything you want, just help me find my family.”

The Rogue Battalion watchman looked over again. Sally was hushed. “You’ll have to calm down,” he warned. “You can’t let any of the Rogue Battalion find out.”

Why not?”

He lowered his voice. “They mean well but if they know that your family are abroad they will have to go through the proper channels which can take a long time.”

Sally was baffled. “All right.”

Meet me at the makeshift gates at eleven. Come alone and make sure no Rogue Battalion see.”

Sally was delirious with excitement at the prospect of her new life and seeing her family again. The hours seemed to slip by at a snails pace. Finally it reached a few minutes to eleven.

The Rogue Battalion guard had been changed.

I’ve left some things in my house. They aren’t valuable or anything but they are important to me. I would really like to have them.”

The guard looked out into the thick darkness. “Now?” he asked.

Sally sobbed. “I have nothing of my family! No photos, no memories and they’re missing.”

Most of the buildings nearby had been destroyed in bomb blasts. It wasn’t safe but the refugees weren’t prisoners either. The guard made up his mind.

Outside you’ll find three of my colleagues. Ask for Noah. I think you should at least wait until morning and he’ll probably agree with me. He’s off duty but you are free to ask for his help.”

Sally thanked him and slipped out into the night. Like she had been told, three members of Rogue Battalion had grouped together beside a camouflaged van. They were laughing. One, shorter than the other two, was stubbing out a cigarette. The largest, and by the style of his dress the most senior, was reminding his subordinates how detrimental to a persons health smoking can be.

Sally took her chance whilst they were distracted. She ran as quickly as she could to the makeshift fence that had been erected at the edge of town. It was now a few minutes past eleven. She hoped the modelling agent had waited for her. She despaired when she found no one was there to take her to her new life.

This way,” she heard a cry. A hole had been cut in the fence. The modelling agent had waited. His face was muddied now and he he had a deep scar down the left side that hadn’t been noticeable before. “Hurry!” he urged.

Sally cut her face on the sharp edges of the space she crawled through. She hoped the modelling agent wouldn’t notice.

A grey van pulled up. Three men piled out.

Wait? Where are we going exactly?”

Sally had been so consumed with glee before she hadn’t thought to ask. It only occurred to her then that she didn’t even know the modelling agents names.

One of the large men from the van gripped her chin. He moved her face side to side. The large double doors at the back of the van were pulled open. The floor was a metal grate. On the wall hung a black and white striped flag with a red rattle snake in the corner. That same symbol had been a token of fear for months before the outbreak of the war and for the duration. When she saw the Makri symbol she tried to scream. Her mouth was covered with a rough, spade like hand. She felt a needle plunge into her neck. Her unconscious body was bundled into the back of the van.

Makri were expert smugglers. Only they would boldly drive to the edge of Rogue Battalion territory and abduct young girls. Sally wasn’t going to an exciting life. She was being taken into the heart of a Makri stronghold in the deep underworld. She would never see her family again. Once in Makri hands she would never be found.


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Pepya threw himself down in the shade of the forest. He had only reached the edge but he couldn’t take himself any further. He had a clear view of the coast line across the warm beach of East Africa.

He didn’t want to steal. He was an honest man and it was against his nature but his wife was sick and his children barely had one meal a day. ‘The General’ had come to his town and offered a lot of money to anyone willing to join his group and obtain resources by any means necessary. Pepya did it for his wife’s sake and for the sake of his children.

A merchant ship stopped at the Went Harbour. Men in dusty brown uniforms were loading and off loading. Pepya wandered closer. No one seemed to pay him any attention. He blended in. He lifted one of the boxes in the pretence that he was helping. The moment he touched it shouting erupted. He stepped back and raised his hands in the air. He didn’t understand what they were saying to him. He knocked one of the boxes over and emblazoned on the side was an image of four rearing horses. In the centre of those was the Admiral’s Seal.

Men in red uniform bore down on Pepya. They were more organised than the helpers. They were pointing heavy duty guns at him that only members of an elite force would have. Pepya tried to say apologise. One of the helpers tried arguing on his behalf but a soldier in red threw their elbow into his face, sending him crashing to the ground. The other’s fell silent. They dared not challenge.

Pepya ran. He had always been a fast runner. He had even been approached as a youngster in the hopes he could represent his home nation as a professional athlete.

A sharp pain fired in the back of his leg as a bullet clipped him. Since he hadn’t gotten away with anything they didn’t gun him down. The shot to his leg served as a painful warning. They chose not to pursue him.

The shadows of night were spreading across the horizon by the time Pepya returned home. His wife was in a terrible state of shock. She had kept herself on her feet as much as possible but she really should have been resting. ‘The General’ had sent for him. Pepya’s family didn’t like ‘The General’. They didn’t trust him. Pepya had tried to explain that their desperation was leaving them with very little choice.

‘The General’ had set up one of the few stable buildings left in town. It was were the bank had been. Those who used to work with the bank had either joined ‘The General’ or had been shot dead on the streets out front. ‘The General’ laid claim to the money. The people of the town had were forced to turn to him for loans.

Pepya was walking with a limp. Two boys in their early teens guarded the door of the bank. When they spotted him approaching the eldest called inside, “He’s here!”

Pepya climbed through the gaping hole, left over damage from rogue military manoeuvres in the town.

‘The General’ seated at a large oak desk that rightfully belonged to the bank manager. He wore the full military regalia complete with medals that had never been earned.

You have had quite an adventure today, haven’t you?” ‘The General’s’ voice boomed. “I heard you tried to lift a box from a merchant ship.”

Pepya nodded in acknowledgement of the statement.

Do you know who that ship belonged to?”

They were a lot more guarded than I had first thought. They shot at me,” Pepya explained, avoiding the question.

‘The General’ stood. He threw his chair back and slammed his fists on the table. “That ship belonged to Admiral Bullbrand. Do you have any idea what you have done?”

Instant shots of adrenaline fired down all four of Pepya’s limbs. He began to shake. He didn’t know Admiral Bullbrand but his reputation was wide spread. “I … I didn’t know until it was too late,” he stammered. “I never took anything.”

‘The General’ grunted. He turned to the television behind him and pushed the play button on a video message that was already loaded.

I received this message ten minutes ago,” he explained.

On the screen appeared the image of the Admiral. He wore a vibrant red blazer which gave a wildness to the piercing blue of his eyes. His sharp chin was held up as he glared at those the message was intended for.

This morning I received word that an individual from one of the local towns attempted steal from one of my supply ships. I’m sure resourceful gentlemen such as yourselves agree that this can not be tolerated. The cheeky little fellow escaped with nothing more than a scraped knee but rest assured this is not the last you have heard of this.” Bullbrand leaned closer to the camera. He gave a sharp intake of breath and his narrow lips tightened. “If I were to let this go then word might spread. Before we know it we have anarchy on our hands and the beautiful beaches of your coast would run red with blood.” Admiral Bullbrand sat back again and took a momentary pause. He ran his forefinger and his thumb across his chin. “To show that theft from one of my ships will not be tolerated I will be with you within forty eight hours. I will see to the punishment of those responsible personally.”

The video message cut. Pepya was finding it a struggle to breathe. He felt two grown men grip his arm.

You heard what the Admiral said.” ‘The General’ spoke calmly. “If we let you go and you flee we will all be destroyed. You have brought Him here. You have brought death to our shores.”

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